12th Academy on Social and Solidarity Economy - Elective 3: SSE, just transition to climate-neutral and circular economy: innovative ways of production and consumption

News | 12 January 2022
The elective courses of the SSE Academy were designed for practitioners from around the world, to debate and share practices, ideas and models for SSE action in specific areas.

This third elective of the academy took place on 16, 17 and 18 November 2021 and it focused on analysing and highlighting the nexus between Just Transition, Circular Economy and the SSE. It was available for participants in English, French and Portuguese.

The elective’s structure and content was coordinated and prepared by Mr. Roberto Di Meglio (ILO) and Ms. Giulia Melina (ITCILO). The sessions were facilitated by Ms. Giulia Melina (ITCILO).

The first day was dedicated to the topic of Just Transition, focusing on its relation with the promotion of decent work with reference to the ILO JT Guidelines, trends, good practices and challenges, opportunities for the SSE linked to the post-COVID recovery investing and procurement practices, key role of social dialogue, ways to make it happen.

During the session, Ms. Najma Mohamed (Policy Director, Green Economy Coalition) explained in which ways SSE can be included in the JT strategic framework as a tool for promoting decent work, providing examples from Costa Rica and Macedonia. Moreover, she gave an overview of the ILO Guidelines on JT and analysed the challenges and opportunities for JT and SSE in the context of the COVID-19 recovery, providing the example of South Africa and talking about its national strategy towards a Just Transition, supported by a tripartite + social dialogue mechanism. The last part of the session entailed a contribution by, Mr. Noel Raboy, President of CLIMBS Life and General Insurance Cooperative - Philippines, who presented the case of CLIMBS as micro-insurance provider with specific insurance products designed on the needs of SSE organizations operating in the Philippines vis-à-vis the disruptive climate change challenges they face.

The presentation by Ms. Mohamed is available here: eng - fr - pt
The presentation by Mr. Raboy is available here: eng - fr - pt

The second day focused on the world of the circular economy and the mutual relation that it has with the SSE, under the umbrella of the JT: besides explaining the principles of the CE, the session focused on the business value and job creation potential of CE processes, highlighting the ways in which this can be declined in the SSE; moreover, the session dealt with the role of governments in the promotion of SSE through JT- and CE-friendly policies, and it presented some inspiring practices that are advocating and supporting this relationship at regional and international level.

The first speaker of the session was Ms. Jana Žůrková, (representative of RREUSE-Reuse and Recycling European Union Social Enterprises), who provided a conceptual overview of the concepts of consumption, waste and CE strategies and presented some good practices of waste recycling, eco design, regeneration, sharing and life cycle extension, coming from European countries. Furthermore, she presented the case of RREUSE and its role in advocating for the inclusion of SSE in EU environmental policies, highlighting the importance of networks to support and promote SSE working in the CE sector. The second speaker was Ms. Andreia Barbosa (representative of Circular Economy Portugal), who presented the strengths and weaknesses of Portugal’s strategy for the promotion of CE at community, sub-national and national level and outlined some good practices involving SSE organizations. The last part of the session was dedicated to Mr. Tshepo Mazibuko (founder of K1 Recycling - South Africa), who presented the success story of K1 Recycling: an enterprise that works with cooperatives operating in the waste management and recycling sector that, besides promoting CE and SSE principles in its actions, fosters the formalization of waste pickers in South Africa.

The presentation by Ms. Žůrková is available here: eng - fr - pt
The presentation by Ms. Barbosa is available here: eng - fr - pt
The presentation by Mr. Mazibuko is available here: eng - fr - pt

The third day was dedicated to the analysis of selected industry sectors in which the partnership between SSE, CE and/or JT in general is particularly relevant and that have an environmental-friendly development potential also in light of the post-pandemic recovery, i.e. the eco-tourism and waste management sectors.

The first speaker of the session, Ms. Chandni Lanfranchi (ILO technical officer and member of the program SCORE) analysed the challenges and opportunities of the eco-tourism industry in Bolivia and its linkages with the promotion of sustainable agri-business value chains. The presentation highlighted how eco-tourism can be a viable tool for a sustainable recovery and job creation within the JT framework. At a second stage, Ms. Sonia Dias (Waste Specialist at WIEGO), presented WIEGO’s role in promoting SSE, CE and JT through its action targeting women in the informal economy, with a specific focus on waste pickers’ cooperatives in the city of Belo Horizonte (Brazil) and Pune (India). The last speaker of the session was Ms. Seynabou Diouf (ILO Officer and Country coordinator of the Partnership For Action on Green Economy - PAGE in Senegal), who presented the work of PAGE with waste collectors of Mbeubeuss (Dakar), based on a market research study and a cooperative feasibility study.

The presentation by Ms. Dias is available here: eng - fr - pt
The presentation by Ms. Diouf is available here: eng - fr - pt
The presentation by Ms. Lanfranchi is available here: eng - fr

The elective saw the active participation of participants in group works and Q&A sessions.

For more information on the 12th edition of the SSE Academy, click here.